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US Government Allowed Flight 253 to Happen

SMOKING GUN: US Government Allowed Flight 253 to Happen

globalresearch.ca
January 25, 2010

Nearly one month after passengers foiled an attempted suicide bomb attack aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253 as it approached Detroit on Christmas Day, new information reveals that the White House and U.S. security agencies had specific intelligence on accused terrorist, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, far earlier than previously acknowledged.

Along with new reports, evidence suggests that the administration’s cover-up of the affair has very little to do with a failure by the intelligence apparatus to “connect the dots” and may have far more serious political implications for the Obama administration, and what little remains of a functioning democracy in the United States, than a botched bombing.

What the White House and security officials have previously described only as “vague” intercepts regarding “a Nigerian” has now morphed into a clear picture of the suspect–and the plot.

The New York Times revealed January 18 that the National Security Agency “learned from a communications intercept of Qaeda followers in Yemen that a man named “Umar Farouk”–the first two names of the jetliner suspect, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab–had volunteered for a coming operation.”

According to Times’ journalists Eric Lipton, Eric Schmitt and Mark Mazzetti, “the American intelligence network was clearly listening in Yemen and sharing that information.” Indeed, additional NSA intercepts in December “mentioned the date of Dec. 25, and suggested that they were ‘looking for ways to get somebody out’ or ‘for ways to move people to the West,’ one senior administration official said.”

Clearly, the administration was “worried about possible terrorist attacks over the Christmas holiday.” These concerns led President Obama to meet December 22 “with top officials of the C.I.A., F.B.I. and Department of Homeland Security, who ticked off a list of possible plots against the United States and how their agencies were working to disrupt them,” the Times reports.

    “In a separate White House meeting that day” the Times disclosed, “Mr. Obama’s homeland security adviser, John O. Brennan, led talks on Yemen, where a stream of disturbing intelligence had suggested that Qaeda operatives were preparing for some action, perhaps a strike on an American target, on Christmas Day.”

In mid-January, Newsweek reported that the “White House report on the foiled Christmas Day attempted airliner bombing provided only the sketchiest of details about what may have been the most politically sensitive of its findings: how the White House itself was repeatedly warned about the prospect of an attack on the U.S.,” Mark Hosenball and Michael Isikoff disclosed.

According to the newsmagazine, “intelligence analysts had ‘highlighted’ an evolving ‘strategic threat,'” and that “‘some of the improvised explosive device tactics AQAP might use against U.S. interests were highlighted’ in other ‘finished intelligence products’.”

However, the real bombshell came last Wednesday during hearings before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee when Bushist embed, and current Director of the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), Michael E. Leiter, made a startling admission.

CongressDaily reported on January 22 that intelligence officials “have acknowledged the government knowingly allows foreigners whose names are on terrorist watch lists to enter the country in order to track their movement and activities.”

Leiter told the Committee: “I will tell you, that when people come to the country and they are on the watch list, it is because we have generally made the choice that we want them here in the country for some reason or another.”

CongressDaily reporter Chris Strohm, citing an unnamed “intelligence official” confirmed that Leiter’s statement reflected government policy and told the publication, “in certain situations it’s to our advantage to be able to track individuals who might be on a terrorist watch list because you can learn something from their activities and their contacts.”

An alternative explanation fully in line with well-documented inaction, or worse, by U.S. security agencies prior to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and now, Christmas Day’s aborted airline bombing, offer clear evidence that a ruthless “choice” which facilitates the murder of American citizens are cynical pretexts in a wider game: advancing imperialism’s geostrategic goals abroad and attacks on democratic rights at home.

Leiter’s revelation in an of itself should demolish continued government claims that the accused terror suspect succeeded in boarding NW Flight 253 due to a failure to “connect the dots.”

However, as far as Antifascist Calling can determine, no other media outlet has either reported or followed-up CongressDaily’s disclosure; a clear sign that its explosive nature, and where a further investigation might lead, are strictly off-limits.

Taking into account testimony by a high-level national security official that terrorists are allowed to enter the country for intelligence purposes, one can only conclude that the alleged “failure” to stop Abdulmutallab was neither a casual omission nor the result of bureaucratic incompetence but rather, a highly-charged political calculation.

Read Full Article Here

 



Obama’s TSA Nominee More Worried About Christians Than “Al-Qaeda

Obama’s TSA Nominee More Worried About Christians Than “Al-Qaeda”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jt6jGT2VsKc

 



TSA Agent places white powder on passenger as “a joke”

TSA Agent places white powder on passenger as “a joke”

Philly.com
January 21, 2010

In the tense new world of air travel, we’re stripped of shoes, told not to take too much shampoo on board, frowned on if we crack a smile.

The last thing we expect is a joke from a Transportation Security Administration screener – particularly one this stupid.

Rebecca Solomon is 22 and a student at the University of Michigan, and on Jan. 5 she was flying back to school after holiday break. She made sure she arrived at Philadelphia International Airport 90 minutes before takeoff, given the new regulations.

She would be flying into Detroit on Northwest Airlines, the same city and carrier involved in the attempted bombing on Christmas, just 10 days before. She was tense.

What happened to her lasted only 20 seconds, but she says they were the longest 20 seconds of her life.

After pulling her laptop out of her carry-on bag, sliding the items through the scanning machines, and walking through a detector, she went to collect her things.

A TSA worker was staring at her. He motioned her toward him.

Then he pulled a small, clear plastic bag from her carry-on – the sort of baggie that a pair of earrings might come in. Inside the bag was fine, white powder.

She remembers his words: “Where did you get it?”

Two thoughts came to her in a jumble: A terrorist was using her to sneak bomb-detonating materials on the plane. Or a drug dealer had made her an unwitting mule, planting coke or some other trouble in her bag while she wasn’t looking.

She’d left her carry-on by her feet as she handed her license and boarding pass to a security agent at the beginning of the line.

Answer truthfully, the TSA worker informed her, and everything will be OK.

Solomon, 5-foot-3 and traveling alone, looked up at the man in the black shirt and fought back tears.

Put yourself in her place and count out 20 seconds. Her heart pounded. She started to sweat. She panicked at having to explain something she couldn’t.

Now picture her expression as the TSA employee started to smile.

Just kidding, he said. He waved the baggie. It was his.

And so she collected her things, stunned, and the tears began to fall.

Another passenger, a woman traveling to Colorado, consoled her as others who had witnessed the confrontation went about their business. Solomon and the woman walked to their gates, where each called for security and reported what had happened.

A joke? You’re not serious. Was he hitting on her? Was he flexing his muscle? Who at a time of heightened security and rattled nerves would play so cavalierly with a passenger’s emotions?

When someone is trying to blow planes out of the sky, what is a TSA employee doing with his eyes off the ball?

When she complained to airport security, Solomon said, she was told the TSA worker had been training the staff to detect contraband. She was shocked that no one took him off the floor, she said.

“It was such a violation,” the Wynnewood native told me by phone. “I’d come early. I’d done everything right. And they were kidding about it.”

I ran her story past Ann Davis, regional TSA spokeswoman, who said she knew nothing to contradict the young traveler’s account.

Davis said privacy law prevents her from identifying the TSA employee. The law prevents her from disclosing what sort of discipline he might have received.

“The TSA views this employee’s behavior to be highly inappropriate and unprofessional,” she wrote. “We can assure travelers this employee has been disciplined by TSA management at Philadelphia International Airport, and he has expressed remorse for his actions.”

Maybe he’s been punished enough. That Solomon’s father, Jeffrey, is a Center City litigator might mean this story isn’t over.

In the meantime, I think the TSA worker should spend time following passengers through the scanners, handing them their shoes. Maybe he could tie them, too.

Update: Ann Davis, the TSA spokeswoman, said this afternoon that the worker is no longer employed by the agency as of today. She said privacy laws prevented her from saying if he was fired or left on his own.

“I Am God” – TSA Agent Arrested at LAX

 



A Message From Transport Canada

A Message From Transport Canada

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZfbTlYpKYo

TSA: we overreact to tiny threats, ignore big ones

 



8-Year-Old Boy On Terror Watch List

8-Year-Old Boy On Terror Watch List

CBS News
January 14, 2010

Meet Mikey Hicks, public enemy number one, according to a Homeland Security Department watch list.

Photo: Mikey Hicks, 8.

He’s also an 8-year-old cub scout who attends parochial school in Clifton, N.J., and has been receiving the third degree from airport security since he was 2-years-old.

“A terrorist can blow his underwear up and they don’t catch him. But my 8-year-old can’t walk through security without being frisked,” his mother, Najlah Hicks, told in reference to the Nigerian man who allegedly tried to blow up a Detroit bound airplane with explosives in his underwear on Christmas Day.

That’s because Mikey Hicks shares a name with someone who appears to be among some 13,500 on the large “selectee” list, which sets off a high level of security screening. The list apparently does not specify age or gender.

Najla Hicks, a photojournalist who was once cleared to fly with Vice President Al Gore, said the family was amused by the mistake at first but that quickly wore off and seven years later they are still trying to clear it up.

“I understand the need for security,” she added, “But this is ridiculous. It’s quite clear that he is 8 years old, and while he may have terroristic tendencies at home, he does not have those on a plane.”

 



TSA: we overreact to tiny threats, ignore big ones

TSA: we overreact to tiny threats, ignore big ones

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VaHqD5OAYi0

 



TSA LIES: Body Scanners CAN Save and Transmit Images

TSA LIES: Body Scanners CAN Save and Transmit Images
Breaking Child Porn Laws

Natural News
January 11, 2010

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLbiMTwTG74

The TSA has been lying to the American people about full-body scanners. The agency has insisted that these “digital strip search” machines are incapable of saving, storing or transmitting the images they take. This, we are told, makes it okay for people to be digitally strip-searched.

But secret documents uncovered by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (www.EPIC.org) have revealed that these machines do indeed posses precisely such capabilities. According to TSA specification requirement documents that have been uncovered by the EPIC, all full-body scanners purchased by the TSA must have the ability to both save and transmit the scanned images of air passengers.

The documents were obtained by EPIC through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit. They have also been shared with CNN, which has viewed the documents and published a story about what they reveal.

These documents contradict the claims of the TSA, which include the statement that “the system has no way to save, transmit or print the image.”

TSA misleads the public

The TSA’s own “imaging technology” page (http://www.tsa.gov/approach/tech/im…) claims, “This state-of-the-art technology cannot store, print, transmit or save the image. In fact, all machines are delivered to airports with these functions disabled.”

That in itself is an interesting statement because by stating those functions are “disabled,” it also admits that the machines inherently have these functions. And just because the machines are delivered with the functions disabled doesn’t mean those functions can’t be re-enabled at the flick of a switch.

In other words, these machines are designed and constructed with the ability to save, store and transmit the images.

“I don’t think the TSA has been forthcoming with the American public about the true capability of these devices,” said the Executive Director of EPIC, Marc Rotenberg in a CNN interview. “They’ve done a bunch of very slick promotions where they show people — including journalists — going through the devices. And then they reassure people, based on the images that have been produced, that there’s not any privacy concerns. But if you look at the actual technical specifications and you read the vendor contracts, you come to understand that these machines are capable of doing far more than the TSA has let on.” (http://edition.cnn.com/2010/TRAVEL/…)

In other words, the TSA is telling the public and the press one thing, but the machines they’re buying are capable of something far more insidious, these documents reveal. Is the TSA intentionally lying to the public in order to mislead people over the real capabilities of these machines?

If these full-body scanners can save, store and transmit images, then it’s only a matter of time before some rogue TSA employee finds a way to copy off the images or display them on the screen so that they can take snapshots with their own portable cameras.

The TSA says it’s protecting your privacy. But its own scanner specification documents tell a different story: The TSA won’t even buy these machines unless they can save, store and transmit revealing images of air passengers.

Sources for this story include:

CNN:
http://edition.cnn.com/2010/TRAVEL/…

TSA.gov:
http://www.tsa.gov/approach/tech/im…